Like many Minnesota kids, I grew up idolizing the 1987 Twins. They were my baseball gods, a colorful, mostly loveable bunch of characters who brought home the big one. Gods on the field, yes, but mortals all the same.
It was hard to watch their careers take them in different directions. Still bitter, I can't stand to hear the name "Tommy Herr" mentioned; I'd have to restrain myself from spitting at the guy if I ever saw him on the street. It was sad to see Sweet Music go, no matter who we got in return. Winning the 1991 Series would have been that much sweeter with The G-Man still around. Even if he was going to be 34, I knew I'd rather have Dan Gladden in the lineup than Pedro Munoz. I was there for Herbie's final game, standing and shouting through a choked-up throat to honor him along with the rest of the crowd. And I agonized over Kirby's beaning and early retirement.
None of that was as hard as reading Carlos Frias' article from the Palm Beach Post about the hell that Jeff Reardon has been going through. I'm not a parent (yet), so I can't even imagine the grief that man is dealing with. But I know that I wouldn't even wish it on anyone, even a monumental jerk like Tommy Herr.
I don't think there's a Twins fan out there who's heart doesn't go out to Jeff Reardon and his family. I hope Jeff is able to get the help and support he needs to overcome this hurdle, one far greater than closing out any ninth inning.